SHADE NET FARMING SYSTEM IN KENYA
Shade net farming system is the method of farming in which net is used on top of metallic or wooden structures instead of green house polythene cover. They (shade net) are made of synthetic fibers that are ultra-violet light treated.
These materials come with long life span of more than 55 years if well installed and taken care of or maintained. Installation of shade nets needs special skills which are available at Eunidrip Irrigation Systems.
Shade nets are available in sizes depending on widths and lengths. The commonly available widths of shade nets in the market are three-meters (3 m), four-meters (4 m) and eight- meters (8 m). Lengths available in the market are 50 meters and 100 meters.
Importance of shade nets
- It is easy to wash
- Do not get Decay with a life span of over 55 years
- Nets are easy to carry and easy to install.
- Easy to relocate to new structures if needed.
- They are ideal for gardens, plant nurseries, home terrace gardening.
- Minimizes plant wind pressures and rainfall large drops or splashes thus avoiding damages to plants and therefore enhances photosynthesis and also stimulate plant growth.
- Conserves water by providing shading effect almost similar to plant canopy.
- Protects plants from pests and diseases.
Shade net suppliers in Kenya
Eunidrip Irrigation Systems are the known suppliers, dealers and installers of shade nets. We stock shade nets of different colors which are green and black.
Our store is always fully packed with shade nets to ensure our customers do not miss at any visit when requested.
We are located along George Morara Road along Nakuru CMS motors. Our immediate location is directly opposite Nakuru Medicross Hospital.
The customer service numbers are always operated 24/7 thus providing room to fully serve our customers at the comfort of their homes or at their working places to their satisfaction.
Shade net Uses and Percentages
Shade nets vary with light emission intensity. Light emission intensity is the amount of shade which the shade net provides to the crops under it.
The nets are commonly used and categorized in terms of percentages. The available percentages commonly used are 90%, 75%, 60%, 55% and 50%.
For instance, 90% light emission shows that the net provides 90% shade thus only 10% of the light from reach the plants.
Nets also come in different colors ranging from white, black and green colors.
The green shade nets are suitable in lowland areas that experience high temperatures and long light duration like coastal and lake regions. By using these shade nets, they provide shading effects and also reflect heat and light to some percentages.
Black shade nets are mostly recommended for use in high altitude areas that experience low temperatures with short sun shine duration. These black shade nets absorb heat that is later dispatched to plants.
Generally, nets provide protection from birds; provide uniform shadow to plants and to control air movement in greenhouses, net houses, and nurseries. The nets are UV treated with resistant additives giving the net its good strength and durability.
A shade percentage of 30%-50% is ideal for vegetables and flowers farming.
Shade nets prices in Kenya
Light and heat emission of shade nets (percentages, %,) dictates the price of each shade net. The shade net with higher percentages cost relatively high as compared to shade nets of lower percentages.
The cost of the shade net is not dictated by the color. The colors listed above mostly dictate the type of plant to be grown.
The commonly used cost determination method in the market is calculated by determining the square unit of the nets or the entire length of the net. This method of cost determination by using the length of the net is majorly used by the manufacturers but not the second handlers or dealers.
Therefore, the price of the net is calculated by finding the square unit of the net which is usually in meters and then multiplied by the cost. For instance, when your net square unit is 200m2, you will multiply 200m2x lets say ksh100 per square meter thus total cost will be ksh20,000
The average prices of the shade nets available in the market range between ksh 60 to ksh140 per square meter.
Shade net sizes in Kenya
Shade nets are available in sizes depending on widths and lengths. More ever, the commonly available widths in the market are three meters (3 m), four meters (4 m) and eight meters (8 m). Lengths available in the market are 50 meters and 100 meters.
Shade nets structures in Kenya
For shade net farming system in Kenya, the commonly used structures are the metallic and wooden structures. Eunidrip Irrigation Systems is well furnished with know how on shade nets designs, supply and installation of shade nets.
Materials used in the metallic structures include;
- Galvanized steel bars which are used as poles, props, runners and arches
- Joiners which includes tapping screws, bolts and nuts, clips and takeoffs
While materials use in wooden structures include are majorly wood and assorted nails.
CROPS GROWN IN THE SHADE NET HOUSES
Crops that are grown in the shade net are the,
- Black berries
CHIVES FARMING AS A CROP IN SHADE NET FARMING IN KENYA
More than 30 percent of farmers in Kenya who used to earlier farm maize and beans have switched to growing chives.
Chives takes about 45 days to mature after which farmers harvest a crop every 20-25 days for up to three years, and a greenhouse measuring 8 meters by 30 meters (240 square meter) produces up to 150 kg.
Shade net farming can produce chives and the cost of a kg of chives may range between ksh 350 and ksh 450. This cost is very lucrative to the farmers as compared to farming of maize and other cereals. After maturity of chives that is, above 45 days with the steady market, a farmer is certain of above ksh 50,000 after every 25 days in three years with minimum maintenance.
This perennial crop, chives, is easy to grow and is rarely attacked by pests and diseases. All these factors, along with a steady export demand, have made it a very attractive crop for the farmers.